Penticton high school assault nets probation

A 15-year-old high school student in Penticton was sentenced to probation for an assault on campus.

Penticton courthouse

Penticton courthouse

A 15-year-old Penticton high school student is serving probation after an assault on a fellow student last year.

The girl, who cannot be named under the Youth Criminal Justice Act, pleaded guilty to one count of assault and was sentenced in Penticton Provincial Court Feb. 27.

On June 20, 2016 around 11 a.m. the offender was overheard talking around the locker by the female victim saying “I’ll go punch her in (class), I don’t care what happens it’s the last day of school,” Crown prosecutor Ann Lerchs said, reading the circumstances to the court.

During the class, the victim saw the assailant glaring at her. As the victim was walking out of the class, the offender grabbed her backpack, pulled the victim back and punched her in the head and face three times, Crown said.

The teacher pulled the assailant away from the victim, and the offender was sent to the office.

In a statment to police, the victim stated that she didn’t feel safe at school and a week prior another classmate had overheard on a schoolbus during a class trip plans the offender made to beat up the victim.

The teacher in the class confirmed the assault took place in a statment to police.

The offender was arrested at her residence around 2 p.m. When the offender arrived at the RCMP detachment, she was asked if she had any body piercings. She responded she had a bellybutton ring and when directed to remove the ring she shoved herself away “windmilling” her left arm against the constable.

She refused to follow orders and told police “they have no right to remove her piercing.” A struggle ensued and she was taken to the floor and secured in handcuffs. She was informed she would not be released until she was calm and able to sign documents. From 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. police made several attempts to speak with the offender.

“Unfortunately she chose to either swear at police or glare without speaking,” Lerchs said.

The offender was not released until the next day, June 21, 2016, at 8 a.m.

Citing the pre-sentence report, Lerchs said the offenders “remorse is more directed towards her parents and herself having to go through the court process. There was an indication she struggled with the concept of writing an apology letter.”

A statment prepared by the victim was read to the court.

“Since I was assaulted I’ve been unable to do my normal activities such as going to the beach or hanging out with friends. I’m continuously scared and always looking over my shoulder, I’ve switched schools,” the victim stated.

The offender’s defence counsel, James Pennington, said the assault was the result of a dispute which had been brewing for quite some time. The two girls, friends at one point, had gone their seperate ways, Pennington said, adding there was much that was said, but little of it face-to-face.

“I went to school once,” said Judge Gail Sinclair. “It was a hell of a long time ago, but I remember how things unfold there.”

Pennington said for the most part, the offender had ignored alleged comments made about her, and on the date in question, she had “had enough.”

Sinclair chastised the girl for her behaviour at the police station and sentenced her to probation for 15 months. The offender was ordered not to be within 50 metres of the school, home or workplace of the victim. The offender was also directed to apologize to the victim.


Penticton Western News